Stewart McDonald, MP for Glasgow South, has returned to Westminster promising to ramp up the pressure on the UK government in an effort to ban exploitative unpaid trial shifts.
McDonald has led on the issue at Westminster by introducing a Private Members Bill that was eventually blocked by the Tory government in March 2018.
The SNP MP’s Unpaid Trial Shifts Bill sought to end the practice of employers asking job applicants to work for hours, days, even weeks without any payment or guarantee of a job at the end of it. It is estimated £3billion of wages is lost every year in the UK, with unpaid work trials contributing to this.
The MP has promised to re-launch a new cross-party group in Parliament in a bid to tackle the growing concern of unpaid work trials, and continue to pressure the Government to ensure the practice is made unlawful.
Commenting, Stewart McDonald said:
“As we head in to the Christmas period in particular, we will see a rise in people being offered unpaid trials shifts, often advertised where no job even exists. This must be the last Christmas of the unpaid work trial.
“Whilst I was pleased to secure new government guidelines on unpaid trials, it is obvious that this is not enough and we need proper legislation to outlaw unpaid trial shifts.
"The culture of unpaid work is a scourge on society and, the UK government must show its willingness to tackle this exploitative practice.
“Whilst the Tory government went out of its way to block previous legislation, there is a huge consensus across the country that unpaid trial shifts are pernicious and plainly unfair. Unpaid shifts serve as a blockage to those trying to find honest, paid work and must go.’’